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October 2010

Brian Kennedy performs at The Platform

Friday, October 29, 2010 - 17:27: Ireland's most successful ambassadors of music, Brian Kennedy will be performing at the Platform on Friday 12th November. Brian is not only a prolific songwriter but also a master interpreter of lyrics. Audiences around the world continue to praise his exceptional vocal talent.

In Review: The Silver Dogs at Lancaster Priory

Friday, October 29, 2010 - 13:13: Who: Silver Dogs Where: Lancaster Priory Reviewed By A.M.Beddows A Lancashire audience was enraptured by a special folk rock concert at the Priory Church, Lancaster on the 15th October. Fresh from their theatre tour of the North West, premier folk rock band Silver Dogs played two faultless and brilliant sets to a full audience /congregation of music lovers last Friday evening.

Challenging times for Council, says Leader Langhorn

Friday, October 29, 2010 - 11:48: Council leader Stuart Langhorn has told virtual-lancaster the next few years will be "challenging" as it adapts to the cuts to its funding from central government announced as part of the Comprehensive Spending Review. "The headline figure of a 28 per cent cut to local government budgets over the next four years will be very challenging for the District Council," he confirmed.

The Dukes starts a search for 'A Little Voice'

Thursday, October 28, 2010 - 18:40: A Little Voice will be in big demand at The Dukes in Lancaster in the spring. In its first outing since an award-winning run in the West End last year, The Dukes will be staging its own production of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, from 24th March - 16th April 2011.

NSPCC Christmas Fair next week

Thursday, October 28, 2010 - 18:15: Lancaster NSPCC committee have organised their first ever exclusive NSPCC Christmas Gift Fair at the Midland Hotel on Thursday 4th November from 10am – 3.30pm Over 20 fabulous stalls will be offering a wide range of gifts for adults, teenagers and children, including: toys and games, children's books, jewellery, kitchenware, gentlemen's accessories, ladieswear, food and drink, crafts and...

Five investigated for benefit fraud following scrap metal operation

Thursday, October 28, 2010 - 14:16: Five people will be investigated for benefit fraud following an operation targeting scrap metal thefts in Morecambe. Officers and PCSOs carried out checks on vehicles, their drivers, passengers and contents at the White Lund Industrial Estate on Monday in order to clamp down on the amount of stolen scrap metal being transported across the area.

UK’s top outdoor writers and photographers descend on district

Thursday, October 28, 2010 - 13:03: The UK’s top outdoor writers and photographers will be descending on Lancaster next weekend (5 - 7th November) for their annual general meeting.

Police appeal after canal viaduct stonework stolen

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 17:50: Police are appealing for information after eight ornamental stones were stolen were stolen from the viaduct over the River Lune at Caton Road in Lancaster. The incident happened at the between Monday 27th September and Friday 1st October. Offenders have approached the bridge and dislodged some of the balustrades before moving them to a concealed location by the bridge.

Award-winning play blows in to The Dukes

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 17:45: What happens when family becomes just a game for other people to watch? Find out at The Dukes on Friday 12th November. The Lancaster theatre will be hosting the award-winning play Blowing, a darkly comedic story of a disintegrated family which no-one has got round to leaving yet. Jules Bradley has it all. Devoted husband, high achieving kids, 45-years-old but she doesn’t look a day over 21.

Local Friends of Chernobyl's Children group launched, seeks volunteers

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 17:17: Following a successful launch meeting earlier this month, the Lancaster Group of the Friends of Chernobyl’s Children has been formed.

Local author (and virtual-lancaster slave) launches SciFi Art Now book

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 15:00: virtual-lancaster contributor John Freeman has been involved in comics and science fiction for over 25 years, but this month sees the publication of his first factual book – SciFi Art Now.

M6 Link Road given go ahead despite spending cuts?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 12:43: Local campaigners arguing for cheaper alternatives to the planned M6 Link Road north of Lancaster have slammed the government's decision to give it a qualified go ahead.

Have the Police found your bike?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 - 12:02: Local police are hoping to reunite owners with their bicycles after a stash of suspected stolen bikes were found in a Morecambe house. Officers discovered around 12 - 15 bicycles – some of which had been broken down into parts – in a basement workshop in Oxford Road in September. A 32-year-old male has been arrested on suspicion of theft and is currently on bail pending further inquiries.

People have their say on public services

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 16:00: Officers from Lancaster City Council were out and about last week asking people their views on public services at a series of ‘listening days’. The events were an opportunity for the council to gauge the public mood in the week of the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) and for people to talk about priorities and reductions in services provided by the council and other public bodies.

Comical Hallowe'en Horror stalks the streets of Lancaster!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 15:59: Lancaster's First Age Comics is making its annual Hallowe'en celebrations something of an event, offering prizes to anyone who turns up in costume to buy their favourite comics this weekend. We doubt few will sport this fabulous mask created by ace artist Bill McConkey (because it's a limited edition and as far as we know, only our very own John Freeman has a copy in Lancaster, the weird man).

Hallowe'en horror at The Dukes!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 13:51: Celebrate Halloween at The Dukes this weekend with one of the most frightening films ever made... The Shining (15) stars Jack Nicholson in Stanley Kubrick’s terrifying masterpiece and was the choice of regular filmgoers at The Dukes who were asked which scary movie they would like to see screened for Hallowe'en.

CCTV to be cut in Lancaster and Morecambe?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 12:31: Lancaster and Morecambe may lose some of its CCTV coverage as well as its Police Community Support Officers as part of new savings the Council will need to make as government funding cuts bite, the City's Chief Executive has told virtual-lancaster.

Keep Safe - Keep a Light on to stop Crime

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 10:16: 750 free timer switches were given out to people in Carnforth, Lancaster, Morecambe and Silverdale last week in a bid to improve home security. Photo courtesy Lancashire Constabulary Local residents are being asked to leave a light on when they go out – so that it looks like someone is still at home.

Planning the Future: Council Calls for Public Help

Tuesday, October 26, 2010 - 08:37: Lancaster City Council has put out an appeal to local people to help shape the future development of the district.

Local Greens condemn Lancashire Constabulary proposal to sack PCSOs

Monday, October 25, 2010 - 18:11: Local Green Party councillors are urging the Lancashire Police Authority not to dismiss all of Lancashire's Police Community Support Officers to make savings cuts. As we reported last week, the county's 427 PCSOs have been handed redundancy notices that could lead to them all being dismissed in March 2011.

Fireworks stolen from local Garden Centre

Monday, October 25, 2010 - 14:25: Police in Morecambe are appealing for witnesses after nearly £4,000 worth of fireworks were stolen from a garden centre. The incident happened overnight between October 18th and 19th at Broadoak Leisure on Lancaster Road, near Torrisholme. The offenders climbed the perimeter fence and broken into a secure shed and stolen 39 boxes of fireworks before making off.

Lancashire Police joins North West crack down on cash-in-transit robberies

Monday, October 25, 2010 - 09:00: Lancashire Police is stepping up its fight against cash-in-transit (CIT) robberies, following major success over the past year with 15 offenders sentenced to more than 180 years in prison.

Local "Against the Cuts" group sets first Public Meeting

Sunday, October 24, 2010 - 09:54: Lancaster and Morecambe Against the Cuts has announced its first public meting will take place on Thursday 18th Novmber at Lancaster Town Hall. The meeting will hear the case against the cuts and discuss possible alternatives to the swingeing cutbacks planned by the ConDem government. There will also be opportunities to discuss what people can do to fight the cuts and defend public services.

Canaries stolen in Bolton-le-Sands

Sunday, October 24, 2010 - 09:00: A Portuguese Harlequin canary similar to birds stolen from a garden in Bolton-le-Sands on 19th October 2010. Image courtesy: http://canariospfreixo.blogspot.comPolice are appealing for information after a number of rare canaries were stolen from a house in Bolton-le-Sands, near Carnforth.

Life Begins at 40 for local Who fans

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 18:17: Life Begins at 40, a new book by local Doctor Who fans Chris Newton and Mark Charlesworth, is the story of two 30-something fanatics sharing a flat in Blackpool, out of pocket, out of luck and clinging to the hope that Life Begins at 40...

New movie celebrates Morecambe Bay's heritage

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 18:09: A new movie celebrating Morecambe Bay released on DVD and launched at Morecambe's Platform venue next month. This event, hosted by award winning heritage film director Chris Abram, is very unique and features film and photographic material going back to early Victorian times. Playing for the delight of the audience as they arrive will be Morecambe Bay Brass.

Morecambe MP calls for alternative to possible job cuts to Police Community Support Officers

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 17:55: Hot on the heels of Lancashire Constabulary's announcement of possible redundancies for all Police Community Support Officers in the county (see news story), Morecambe and Lunesdale MP David Morris has tabled an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons that argues the proposal makes the wrong kind of cuts to services.

Cuts Casualties? All PCSOs placed ‘at risk’ by Lancashire Constabulary

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 16:51: After the government's massive cuts announcements earlier this week, the real and potential casualties of the Comprehensive Spending Review are already beginning to rise, with all Lancashire's Police Community Support Officers told their jobs may go by March next year.

Wanted man may be in Morecambe area

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 10:53: Wanted: William Robert Leech, who may be in the Morecambe area.Hot on the heels of news of a successful arrest of a wanted man comes an appeal from York police, who are hoping the public can help to locate a wanted man who may be in the Morecambe area. William Robert Leech, aged 30, of Barfield Road, York, is wanted for recall to prison for breaching the terms of his licence.

Wanted man arrested after months at large

Friday, October 22, 2010 - 10:46: Wanted Heysham man Joseph Almond, who failed to appear at Preston Crown court in July (see news story) was arrested at Beacon Fell, Longridge on the 13th October 2010 and is now is back in Preston Prison. Joseph Almond Almond was wanted in connection with an assault and a burglary in Morecambe back in June, as well as in connection with a burglary in Folkestone, Kent.

In Review: Dancing at Lughnasa (Lancaster Footlights)

Thursday, October 21, 2010 - 23:27: Set two miles outside the Donegal village of Ballybeg in 1936, Brian Friel's Dancing at Lughnasa is a sad play. And this sadness is rendered particularly poignant through dramatic irony: the narrator, Michael, tells us much of what will happen before it actually has.

More freedom for Councils on transport - or will they take the blame for service cuts?

Thursday, October 21, 2010 - 19:31: Morecambe and Lunesdale MP David Morris challenged the Government on its commitment to public transport this week - especially buses - asking what the Department of Transport is doing to encourage bus companies to increase the number of services they provide in rural and small town locations.

Lancastrians Protest Public Spending Cuts as Job Losses Loom

Thursday, October 21, 2010 - 13:16: About 300 demonstrators flocked to a Lancaster Town Hall yesterday evening to protest public spending cuts. The gulf between rich and poor grew considerably wider yesterday as massive cuts to public services were outlined by home-flipping multimillionaire Conservative Chancellor George Osborne.

Crime generally continues to fall in Lancashire, but sexual and drug offences rise

Thursday, October 21, 2010 - 10:59: On the day after the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced swingeing cuts to public services, including the police, Home Office crime statistics released today show that Lancashire is still a very safe place to live, with police officers and police staff continuing to achieve higher than average reductions in crime.

"Serious Challenges" ahead for local university as cuts announced

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 - 17:07: The Vice Chancellor of the University of Cumbria has warned that Higher Education faces "serious challenges" after Coalition government announced cuts for the sector.

Human skull find is cockle picking victim

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 - 12:47: Police have confirmed that a human skull found in Silverdale is that of a Chinese woman Liu Qin Ying who was believed to have lost her life along with her husband in the 2004 Morecambe Bay cockle picking tragedy. The skull was found on the shoreline in Silverdale on 10th July this year and was taken to Royal Preston Hospital for examination.

Howl with laughter for Hallowe'en at The Borough

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 14:36: Simon BlighIf the thought of trick or treaters fills you with horror this Hallowe'en then The Lancaster Comedy Club will be providing the ideal solution! Avoid the thinly veiled threats of the youth of the locality by snuggling up in the upstairs room of The Borough pub and watch some of the best comics in the UK strut their stuff.

Residents and businesses warned of dangers of identity theft

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 13:33: A Lancashire detective who has himself been the victim of identify theft is urging others to take precautions with their personal details at home and at work. The officer’s warning comes as part of National Identity Fraud Prevention Week, which is now in its sixth year.

Ron Freethy Book Signing in Carnforth

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 - 13:21: Author Ron Freethy will be signing his latest book, Memories of the Lancashire Fishing Industry, at Carnforth Bookshop, on 6th November. Over the last 70 years or so, Lancashire's fishing industry has gone from boom in the 1940s to bust in the 1970s, and more recently to quotas and a more modest success.

Business Network Launches in Lancaster

Sunday, October 17, 2010 - 19:51: Michelle Malkin, founder of Business Network LancasterAn entirely new concept in networking, whose organiser says has generated tens of millions of pounds worth of business for entrepreneurs in other parts of the country, is being launched in Lancaster.

New Morecambe Housing Co-op Seeks Members

Sunday, October 17, 2010 - 19:26: Black Combe Housing Co-op are looking for likeminded people to join them in setting up and living in a new housing co-op in Morecambe. The co-op members Stacey, Matt, Aurora and Rory explained, "We are all enthusiastic about creating a supportive community and want to hear from people who would like to become part of this project with us.

Lancastrians To Rally Against Public Service Cuts, Wednesday 20th

Saturday, October 16, 2010 - 18:49: A new local campaign group has formed to rally opposition to planned Government cuts in public services. Called 'Lancaster and Morecambe Against the Cuts', their first demonstration has been called for this Wednesday, 20th October at 6.00pm in Dalton Square outside Lancaster Town Hall, and all are invited to attend.

Argh! The ups and downs of life as a comic book creator

Friday, October 15, 2010 - 13:27: If Beryl the Peril, Korky the Cat, Spider-Man, Desperate Dan and the Bash Street Kids are some of your favourite cartoon characters, then get along to Morecambe's Platform venue on Friday, 29th October to meet Tim Quinn, who worked on the comics that have featured these characters as a script writer.

Have a Safe and Happy Hallowe'en

Friday, October 15, 2010 - 12:00: Lancashire Police are taking action to ensure that Hallowe'en is an enjoyable time – both for those who celebrate the spooky spectacular and those who choose not to. They are offering safety advice to those out trick or treating and reassurance to residents who want a quiet evening -- offering posters to display in windows (PDF) for those who do not want spooky callers.

Police warnings after high performance cars stolen in Wyre

Friday, October 15, 2010 - 09:00: Police in Wyre are urging residents and motorists to keep their car keys secure to avoid becoming a victim of burglars who break into houses with the sole intention of stealing high powered or high value motor vehicles following a spate of thefts in the area.

Police appeal following Lancaster B & Q theft

Friday, October 15, 2010 - 01:32: Police in Lancaster have released CCTV images following a theft from a Lancaster DIY store last week. On Thursday 7th October at around 12,30pm, two men entered the B Q store on Aldcliffe Road in Lancaster and filled up a trolley worth of goods. They then went to the garden centre area of the store, unlocked the security gates and left the making no attempt to pay for the items.

Appeal after vandalism in Bolton le Sands

Friday, October 15, 2010 - 01:11: Carnforth police are appealing for people to come forward with information following a series of criminal damage in Bolton-le-Sands. Between 8.30pm on Saturday 2nd October and 4.20pm on Sunday 3rd October the front window of the Packet Boat Chip Shop on Main Road was smashed, causing significant damage.

Not the Jazz Festival returns to Lancaster

Friday, October 15, 2010 - 01:04: Not The Lancaster Jazz Festival is back for 2010 at the Gregson and features the best in contemporary jazz from around the north of England on 31st October. Play an instrument? Then come and play in the Cobra workshop at the start of the day. It's open to all musicians and will explore John Zorn's most popular game piece - with no scores or written music it just has a set of rules - game on.

Dog owners urged to think twice about using extendable leads

Thursday, October 14, 2010 - 10:40: Image courtesy Lancaster City CouncilLocal dog wardens are urging dog owners to think twice about using extendable leads after a young boy was almost garroted whilst riding his bike. Isaac Hargreaves, age 6 from Morecambe, was riding his bicycle along the quiet cul de sac where he lives when he cycled into an extendable dog lead and fell backwards off his bike.

Opera Highlights to be Performed at Lancaster Cathedral

Wednesday, October 13, 2010 - 16:00: The Encore Opera Group will perform selections from several of the very best-loved operas in Lancaster Cathedral on Friday 22nd October at 7:30pm. Encore’s concert will feature numerous operatic favourites, including The Hebrew Slaves’ Chorus from Nabucco, the Finale from Act I of Don Giovanni, the Toreador’s Song from Carmen and the Pearl Fishers Duet.

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